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Amazon Van Crash Lawyer

As more Ohio residents rely on Amazon for the delivery of various types of products, more Amazon vans travel through Butler County and throughout the greater Cincinnati and Dayton areas. Yet like other types of delivery services, Amazon vans can be involved in serious crashes. In many cases, the Amazon van driver may be responsible for the accident. Indeed, delivery drivers for Amazon are often on a schedule that requires quick deliveries, and drivers may speed or engage in other dangerous behaviors on the road in order to deliver products at a faster pace. If you or someone you love sustained injuries in a collision with an Amazon delivery van, it is important to find out more about your options for seeking financial compensation. You could be eligible to file an insurance claim or an Amazon van accident lawsuit.

Common Causes of Amazon Van Crashes

Amazon van crashes in Butler County and throughout Ohio can have a wide range of causes, such as:

  • Amazon van driver’s negligence, which may include distracted driving, aggressive driving, or intoxicated driving, for example;
  • Another motorist’s negligence;
  • Defective vehicle part;
  • Negligent vehicle maintenance;
  • Inclement weather; or
  • Negligently maintained roads.

What Should I Do After an Amazon Van Accident?

After an Amazon van collision, it is important to take steps to preserve your ability to seek compensation. You should make sure to do the following after an Amazon van accident:

  • First: Obtain important information at the accident scene. You should take photographs, including images from many different vantage points. In addition, identify the names and contact details of any parties involved in the collision. You should also obtain contact information and details from possible witnesses. Be certain to also ask the Amazon van driver for their driver’s license information. You should also note the license plate number and details about the van.
  • Second: See a doctor as soon as possible. You need to have a medical assessment to receive treatment for injuries and to identify any serious injuries that have not yet resulted in symptoms. By seeing a doctor, you can limit the defendant’s ability to argue that you are responsible for your injuries worsening due to your delay in seeking treatment.
  • Third: Report the accident to your own auto insurance company. Even if you plan to file a claim with the Amazon van driver’s insurer, you will need to inform your insurer about the accident. Do not provide subjective information to the insurance company. Your own insurer, as well as the Amazon driver’s insurer, will be focusing on their own bottom line. Insurance companies routinely look for reasons to legitimately deny claims. Do not offer any information that could be used against you.
  • Fourth: Decide whether to file an insurance claim with the Amazon van driver’s insurance or through your own insurance policy. Your decision may be based on the Amazon driver’s policy. Sometimes Amazon delivery drivers carry more extensive liability insurance. In other situations, the Amazon driver may have limited insurance. If the latter is true, liability limits could reduce the amount you are able to obtain in a settlement.
  • Fifth: Negotiate a settlement with the insurance company. Remember that auto insurance claims are negotiable. You can often obtain a bigger settlement than the amount the company initially offers.
  • Sixth: File an Amazon van delivery driver accident lawsuit. To file a lawsuit, you will need to identify the liable party or parties. Sometimes one party is at fault. In other circumstances, multiple parties could be at fault. In order to file a lawsuit, you will also need to ensure that the statute of limitations has not run out.

How to Prove Fault in an Amazon Van Crash

Multiple options often exist to prove fault in an Amazon van crash, such as:

  • Witness statements;
  • Police reports;
  • Photographs from the scene;
  • Accident reconstruction expert reports; and
  • Traffic cameras.

Amazon Drivers: Independent Contractors Versus Employees

One important issue in determining who is liable for an Amazon van accident is whether an Amazon van driver is classified as an independent contractor or an employee of Amazon. Typically, Amazon says that its van drivers are self-employed, or independent contractors. They deliver goods and products through other companies contracted by Amazon. At the same time, Amazon van drivers often drive vans with identifying “Amazon” marks on them. In addition, the drivers wear Amazon clothing or vests. As such, it may be possible that Amazon van accident lawsuits could prove that Amazon is in fact liable for crashes caused by its van drivers under the doctrine of respondeat superior. What is the doctrine of respondeat superior? It says that employers are liable for the injuries caused by their employees’ negligence.

Filing an Insurance Claim After an Amazon Van Accident

After an Amazon van accident, the first way most people will seek compensation is by filing an insurance claim. It will be critical to determine whether the Amazon van driver has a commercial insurance policy through which you can file a claim for compensation. In order to file a claim through the Amazon van driver’s insurer, you will need to be able to prove that the driver was responsible for the accident. As noted above, there are multiple options for proving fault in Amazon delivery vehicle collisions.

If you cannot file an insurance claim through the Amazon van driver’s policy, you also may be eligible to file a first-party claim through your own auto insurance. You will need to pay your deductible upfront. However, it may be possible to recoup that money through subrogation later on.

How to File a Lawsuit After an Amazon Van Collision

When an insurance claim is insufficient to cover your losses in an Amazon van crash, you may be eligible to file a lawsuit. What will you need to file an Amazon van accident lawsuit? First, you will need to determine who is liable for the crash. To determine fault, you will need to examine the causes of the crash. Often, Amazon van drivers are liable for the collision. At the same time, one or more other parties could be at fault. Examples of parties who could bear responsibility include:

  • Amazon van driver;
  • The mechanic who serviced the van;
  • Party responsible for loading the Amazon van with goods for delivery;
  • The driver of another motor vehicle;
  • Maker of the Amazon van or one of its parts if the crash resulted from a defect; or
  • Owner of the premises where the Amazon van crash happened.

Although Amazon classifies its van drivers as independent contractors, you should also find out about Amazon’s liability. It is possible that more lawsuits for Amazon delivery collisions could lead courts to make an important decision. That decision could ultimately result in Amazon bearing some responsibility for crashes. This issue arose with Uber and Lyft, and those rideshare companies ultimately instituted a $1 million insurance policy. It is possible that Amazon could be required to do something similar.

Damages in an Amazon Van Accident

If you file an Amazon van accident lawsuit, you will typically be able to seek compensatory damages. Under Ohio law, compensatory damages are aimed at compensating a person for their losses. They include economic and non-economic damages.

Statute of Limitations for an Amazon Van Accident Case

To be eligible to file an Amazon van accident lawsuit, you will need to make sure that you have filed your lawsuit on time. This issue concerns the statute of limitations. Under Ohio’s personal injury statute of limitations, there is usually a two-year clock. Accordingly, you will need to file your lawsuit within two years from the accident date. If you do not file a lawsuit within that two-year window, your claim can be time-barred.

The statute of limitations for wrongful death lawsuits in Ohio is also two years. If an Amazon van accident resulted in a loved one’s death, a wrongful death case will need to be filed within two years from the date of death.

Contact a Butler County Amazon Van Accident Lawyer

Amazon van accidents in Butler County can be devastating. Occupants of other motor vehicles can be seriously injured in crashes, and pedestrians and bicyclists can suffer debilitating and deadly injuries. Commercial vehicle drivers owe a duty of care to other motorists on the road, and to pedestrians and bicyclists. If an Amazon van driver caused a collision in which you were injured, it is essential to learn more about seeking compensation. Depending upon the facts of the case, you may be eligible to file an auto insurance claim or to file a lawsuit against one or more at-fault parties. Given that it can be difficult to know whether Amazon van drivers will ultimately be classified as employees or independent contractors for purposes of Amazon’s liability in a crash, it will be important to find out about all available options for obtaining compensation.

An experienced Hamilton Amazon van accident lawyer at our firm can discuss your case with you today. Contact the law firm of Kruger & Hodges to learn more about our services for plaintiffs who have been injured.

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